i have been doing this project recently where I had relative difficult start with a team , but at one point it worked and the team started to accept me as a leader. Not a leader like "team lead" , but just as a leader. I also designed the application we are doing. I am very much pro learning person and like very much when the people around me succeed and fulfill their goals as well. So very often I pick technology also because it is fun or because I think other people in the team will find it fun. This attitude created a pretty good relation between me and most of the other developers.

The managment told me recently that they would give the rest of the team a new task and they want me to not get involved into it in order to see how the team is functioning without me. The size of the task aproximatly is 25% of the project size at the moment so it is not like I am put on the sideline completly. It is about a new module in which they dont want me to participate. I think that is a prettey serious bullshit and it is more of a control thing since most of the developers look to me. The functional people around the team have a prefered person in the team, that prefered person is not me.

I already said to the managment that no-one likes "parachute droppers", so they already know my disagreement. I also said that I am not going to make way for this person but I am not also going to stop him if he wants to lead.

How should I react to that ? Should I just ignore the situation and continue working as usual ?

UPDATE: More details on team structure: The extended team consists of developers 6-7. And functional experts 3-4. Although we are supposed to be one team. The functional part of the team functions more or less as separate entity with handover. The developers are more or less agile, the functional experts are on the other end. We don't have like an official team lead in terms of development, but we have a responsible lead that is a non developer . More of an HR thing, he is also functional expert.

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    What does you Manager (not this elusive concept of 'the management') say when you bring this up in your one-on-ones? I would comment that if I had a someone who introduced new technology "because it is fun", there would be a full and frank discussion about change procedure and company standards.
    – PeteCon
    Nov 6, 2020 at 21:42
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    "How should I react to that ? Should I just ignore the situation and continue working as usual ?" why is 'do as your told and back off' not your default go-to?
    – Aida Paul
    Nov 6, 2020 at 23:39
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    @TymoteuszPaul is "do as you are told" your default go-to ? Also why should I comply if it is not the wish of my co-developers.
    – Pesho
    Nov 7, 2020 at 0:01
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    @Pesho when being directly told by my manager? Yep, I default to following direction, why is that a problem?
    – Aida Paul
    Nov 7, 2020 at 0:02
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    @Pesho What nordics? And I asked a simple question but I am kinda getting very good answer, even though you didn't really answer the question, because if that's how you show as a leader, boy, there be trouble.
    – Aida Paul
    Nov 7, 2020 at 0:07

2 Answers 2


How to react if the team accepts you as leader but the managment tells you to back off?

If you were in fact the official leader of your team, you would expect your teammates to respect your decisions. They may not always like your decisions, but they should feel free to discuss them with you, and understand that leaders bear the ultimate responsibility.

Your management is the official leader of your team, which includes you. It may indeed be a bullshit decision, but having and displaying a negative attitude will not go well for you.

If you're the owner of your company, you can make whatever decisions you want. Everyone else has to act as directed by those above them. You need to respect (not agree with) the decision of your managment by making the best of it, and helping them carry out their goals.

Should I just ignore the situation and continue working as usual?

I would not. It sounds like there is tension and bad blood surrounding this situation. I would instead go back to your management and apologize. Say you were disappointed because you enjoy being a leader on the team, and you were frustrated. Offer to do whatever you can to help this effort succeed, even if that's just doing something else.

This could potentially work in your favor.

Things might go wrong under the other person's leadership and you may be asked to pitch in. Your management might notice and appreciate your positive attitude, which could lead to future opportunities to lead, even on other teams.

If you want to take on the role of official leader, you'll need to display all of the qualities of a good one, and most of all, be patient.

  • Would have agreed with you(ref first part of answer) if it was a private company with real owner. It is a public sector though and the leader is hardly a leader. Not a developer for sure and not technical person as well.
    – Pesho
    Nov 7, 2020 at 10:31
  • Ah yes, public sector has its own unique problems, but even if you think the person's not a leader, apparently someone in a position of power thinks so.
    – mcknz
    Nov 8, 2020 at 2:51

The managment told me recently that they would give the rest of the team a new task and they want me to not get involved into it in order to see how the team is functioning without me.

This sounds like they want to see if there are any gaps in the team's ability to handle projects without you. It's good business to avoid having any business functions with a "bus factor" of 1, i.e. something that only one person in the company can do. If that's the case, you can take it as a compliment that the company thinks you're so valuable that they're worried their business might have to halt some of its work if you aren't available. However, you can't know for sure without asking your manager. Even if they can't give you a more detailed answer on why they've taken this stance, you can at least confirm with them that the company doesn't have any issues with your performance or behavior.

  • If you are essential in your current role you cannot be promoted. Nov 8, 2020 at 4:05

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